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Mădălina Calance Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iași firstname.lastname@example.org Abstract: Considering the process of integration and the enlargement of the European Union, the continent's political map changed significantly during the last decades. For most of the European nations, facing the integration is going on the path of the economic and social improvement, which also involves important aspects about the nation-state (national identity, nationalism). This paper will focus on the meanings and the dimensions of contemporary nationalism and will later look at the impact of the nationalist ideas in the EU, in times of recession. The study found out that there are many perspectives of the EU challenging national economies and the state sovereignty but, at the same time, people are aware the imminence of the European identity in their economic and cultural future. Keywords: nationalism, national identity, European identity, immigration, populist parties JEL Classification: F15, F52, F59
In the European history, the idea of nationalism has very deep roots. The nationalist ideology is a chameleon over time, being adapted to the prerogatives of a certain nation, the theoretical interpretations of a historical period or to specific political circumstances. Certainly, nationalism is one of the major phenomenons of the last two centuries, whose expression is a reflection of multiplying the nation-states from a dozen (mostly in Europe) to thousands. This increase demonstrates the strength of the principle of self-determination, which proclaims the right of people and nations to establish their own course of political, economic, cultural and social development, without outside interventions. Under the aegis of globalization, important economic and political changes are occurring throughout the world, due to the activity of multinational or transnational corporations, interstate economic organizations or supranational organizations (such as the European Union), with a major impact on the sovereignty of the national state, considered to be more powerless in solving global problems such as: monetary policy, security, the regulation of commercial activities, etc. The new shape of world politics is emerging the idea of the state losing sovereignty in favour of higher political entities. There are many aspects of the European Union challenging national sovereignty. This fact is feeding the nationalist and populist criticism and is shaping a resistance phenomenon. Therefore, we can notice an antagonistic relationship between nationalists, focusing on the set of
CES Wo rking Papers, IV, (1), 2012
The national identity is now facing especially the contact with other national cultures. nationalism is a doctrine that differentiates the individuals in their nationality. On the other hand. 1. In both. and the Swiss Federation. at a global level. According to the English economist John A.” (p. a sociological or psychological perspective. The European Union understood this imperative. IV. as in the cases of Austro. integration seems to dissipate the political borders of nation-states. they always feel the need for distinction. 2012 25 .co m CES Wo rking Papers.britannica. Nationalism was the most successful political force of the XIXth century. but socially as well. or establishment of political union on a basis of nationality. in external politics. (1). which reveals the possibility of higher authorities to manage and enforce rules and judgments directly to the national structures. That struggle. This view tends to be anachronistic in the context of a galloping XXI st century globalization. Otherwise. However. the approach of a unified society is paradoxically emphasizing notions as "difference". by facilitating trade flows. Hobson (2005) during the nineteenth century ’’ the struggle towards nationalism.Hungary. was a dominant factor alike in dynastic movements and as an inner motive in the life of masses of population. enlarging the area of nationality. sometimes took a disruptive form […] or sometimes it was a unifying or a centralising force. the general tendency was towards welding into large strong national unities the loosely related states and provinces with shifting attachments and alliances that covered large areas. the new political system created the dilemma of nationstate. which supports the reinforcement of national identies. as in United Germany and in North America. Norway and Sweden. Whether individuals are single or organized in communities. Furthermore. "identity" or "independence". [… ] Sometimes nationality was taken as a basis of federation of States. financial and international migration.3) * www. and therefore adopted the motto”Unity in diversity” (lat. THE PAST AND PRESENT OF EUROPEAN NATIONALISM An Encyclopaedia Britannica * overview submits that nationalism is an ideology based on the premise that the individual’s loyalty and devotion to the nation-state surpass other individual or group interests. the socio-cultural interconnectivity leads to the emergence of nationalist ideas that are either justified or exaggerated. In varietate concordia).interests and aspirations of a nation and supra nationalism . not only economical. making for federal union of diverse nationalities. Inevitably. It is true that the forces making for political union sometimes went further.
especially in countries with dictatorial (fascist) regime. by promoting chauvinism. (1). identity and diversity and questioning the Union’s capacity to lead the states beyond their features. as well. the European Court of Human Rights or the Commission) impose standards on states. According to Riva Kastoryano (2010). 2012 26 . nationalism is a major challenge for the EU by raising the issue of minorities. This creates a reaction from the far-right parties. are putting into question the power of the nation state. Many voices. CES Wo rking Papers.4). IV.national character of the Union requires that all member states should surrender a part of their sovereignty by correlating the legislation and applying the directives of the European institutions. racism and xenophobia. The Second World War ends with the communist regimes takeover. p. ideas. authoritarianism. the national boundaries are redrawn. These parties have managed to legitimize policies by nationalist and protectionist approach. and populism refers to an ideology that considers society ultimately separated into two homogeneous and antagonistic ’pure people’ versus ’the corrupt elite’. to please the people of Europe. so the EU institutions (the European Court of Justice. 543). the economic recession proves once again that the emergence of nationalism is a condition. xenophobia refers to the fear of anything alien (including people. the collapse of communism and the European Union enlargement were succeeded by the removal of anti-democratic aspects. The supra. habits).In middle of the XXth century the European nationalism loses its original meaning becoming more aggressive. from the academic or the political field. or populism” (p. the nationalist ideas and the future of national economies. The same author claims that” nationalism entails a polit ical doctrine arguing the convergence of state (the political unit) and nation (the cultural unit). At the end of the century. seeking to redefine the principles of states and the national identity against the supranational institutions. On the other hand. Cas Mudde (2004 a) studies the issue of populist parties and defines them as „political parties that share an ideology which combine features as: nationalism. authoritarianism denotes a strict belief in law and order (yet not necessarily an antidemocratic attitude). In times of austerity. xenophobia. the far-right parties are rising in Europe. Supranational is normative. and which argues that politics should be an expression of the volonté générale (general will) of the people” (Mudde 2004 b. With the European Union. fed by growing nationalist resentments of citizens or immigrants. the nationalism being transformed in empathy for the national working class and xenophobia for the capitalist side.
law. He claims that ”in the cultural sphere. Ireland. 144) . IV. Great Britain.1 Protecting national identity On a late 90’s survey† initiated by The European Values Study questioning the opinion on the European Union. Lithuania. Spain. Cyprus. national identity is revealed in a whole range of assumptions and myths. Estonia.eu/scadplus/constitution/objectives_en. religion. Serbia. Also. Georg ia. The nation may also be seen as the basic unit of moral economy. Ro mania. the approaches of national identity are configured on cultural. Germany (East/West). 144). For Smith. Malta. Sweden. Therefore. Republic of Moldova. CES Wo rking Papers. (1). Socially. Northern Ireland. Russia. Swit zerland. the generally accepted boundary within which intercourse normally takes place and the limit for distinguishing the ’outsider’. Portugal. Smith (1991) speaks about national identity in political terms as determining the co mposition of the regime ’s personnel and legitimating the policy goals and administrative practices for every citizen. Armen ia. values and memories. in terms of both territory and of resources and skills” (p. Republic of Montenegro.national legitimacy’. and ultimately in the world as a whole. race. have become the only recognized source of ‘inter. Turkey. Otherwise. Bulgaria. by commanding the basic political allegiance of citizens.” (p. Regarding the relations between the Union and the Member States. Fin land. ethnic or historical backgrounds. as well as in language. ”the nation and the national identity. France. Czech Republic. the nation-states and the national identity are fundamental dimensions of the modern world. Iceland. Austria. Lu xembourg. Republic of Macedonia. A zerbaijan. Ukraine. institutions and ceremonies. because of their omnipresence and universality. Latvia. 2012 27 . Italy. Den mark. Bosnia -Herzegovina. Slovak Republic. The Netherlands. Hungary. Northern Cyprus. gender. the European Constitutional Treaty brings the obligation to respect the national identities and the fundamental political and constitutional structures of the Member States * . Slovenia.2.htm Research aria: A lbania.). Croatia. * † http://europa. Greece. historical or ethnic references. of the validity of a system of states in each region and continent. NATIONAL AND EUROPEAN IDENTITY The meaning of national identity is based on the concept of nation-state (as its founding principle) that relies on cultural. Norway. Poland. Anthony Smith (1991) sees national identity as the most fundamental and inclusive of all collective identities (class. many people believed that EU was an organism able to protect national identity. Kosovo. Belarus. Belgiu m. statistics show that the feelings of belonging to EU are tending to be very similar in nature to the way citizens are proud of their nationality. 2. etc. the national bond provides the most inclusive community.
IV.gesis. As we can see in Figure 2. 2012 28 . Few people were thinking that unifying the European states would mean the end of their national. there is a greater percentage of the answers favouring the idea of European Union as protective for the national identity (about 75 %): Figure 1 – Opinion on European Union: National Identity (1990-1999) Source: Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences (http://zacat. only a truly united Europe could protect its states national. the unemployment or the immigration. the frequency of sceptical views has increased considerably. historical and cultural identities and their national economic interests from the challenges of the superpowers. the fear of loosing national identity was more intense. the percentage of people who answered they were ” very much afraid” of loosing national culture or identity almost equals the percentage of negative answers. historical and cultural identities.For them.org/) In 2008. As we can see in Figure 1. (1). due to important factors such as the global crisis. of people saying they are ”not afraid of all” (17%). in times of recession. Their national economic interests would also be sacrificed. If ten years before some people may have had fears about the consequences of the European Union openness. CES Wo rking Papers.
org/) 2. higher incomes or just a better lifestyle. 2012 29 . the state and the ethnic identities operate and interact in a larger. At the same time we are facing a negative phenomenon. with the EU consolidation. the international migration flows can be considered by the host population as a threat to the national identity and can cause nationalist reactions of rejection.gesis. 2005). it offers the opportunity for business to expand and for millions of people to have better jobs. common space. Today. With the dissipation of borders induced by increased international collaboration and the influx of labor force in the European market. (1). IV.Figure 2 – Fear of loosing national identity (2008) Source: Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences (http://zacat. because the mobility of individuals comes with the external migration phenomenon.2 Immigration Immigration affects the national economic system and always represented an important social problem. In response to xenophobia of the host population the immigrants could preserve their national identity and CES Wo rking Papers. The European nationalism of the XIXth century was an unifying force which brought together people of diverse backgrounds at the price of subordinating their ethnic identities to the larger territorial unit dominated by the secular state (Pamir. Furthermore.
nationalism finds expression inside the communities living within nationstates and aspires to autonomy or their own state constitution (e. as well. and only few disagree with this assumptions. Figure 3 – EU citizens opinion on immigrants taking their jobs Source: Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences (http://zacat. the Hungarians in Transylvania). the evolution of multicultural states is a major threat to nationalist ideology. In Europe. In fact. Instead of a uniform European society. (1). CES Wo rking Papers. as a result of integration. 2012 30 . even within nation-states. Thus.org/) About 40% of respondents asked in the survey belived that immigrants are causing damages on the national labor market. and migration continues to erode faith in the nation-state. there is a rare situation when a state administers a homogeneous community. A similar percentage sees the future of society affected by the proportion of immigrants. As we can see in the below charts (figures 3 and 4). Therefore. penetration and mixture of individuals from different cultura l backgrounds other than the reference country are leading to the development of multicultural communities. IV. many people are considering that immigrants take jobs away from natives in a country and will become a threat to society.gesis. being a challenge for cultural heritage of nations. we are witnessing an increasing diversity inside the national space.g.maintain strong links with the original community.
Denmark. the Netherlands. exceeding 10 % (figure 5).gesis. Moreover. 2012 31 . France or Belgium the rise of populist. which are disrupted by the globalization. challenging the economy and the common currency. in Finland. True Finns party. the job losses. the instability. IV.Figure 4 – EU citizens opinion on immigrants representing a social threat Source: Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences (http://zacat. The Dutch Freedom Party and the Danish People's Party.’33 crisis that paved the way for Hitler or Mussolini’s nationalist governments. which are anti-Islamist. the inequality and poverty in developing countries. that are expressed mostly through the voice of nationalist or populist parties. xenophobic. They represent the voice of citizens.org/) 2. the dependence on powerful supranational bodies are often causing discontents and emerging nationalist ideas. Europhobic parties are challenging the European democracy. We have the example of the ’29. which is eurosceptic CES Wo rking Papers.3 The nationalist parties The political and economic history of Europe shows us that the economic recession leads to the emergence of nationalism and enhances the credibility of nationalist governments. (1).immigrant parties in Europe. Hungary. The France National Front (FN). Italy. Sweden. BBC News Europe also indicates a resurgence of nationalism in Europe by recording the electoral results for some of the most successful nationalist/ anti. the negative ”domino” effects of globalization. The current global recession hit hard the Euro Zone. Austria. or immigration. In Finland.
that the European integration process should be reverted. (1).starfor. 2012 32 .stratfor. Bulgaria is fighting * The world's leading private intelligence firm (www. which would grant Hungarian citizenship to ethnic Hungarians outside its borders and Romanians. they all have great political influence by achieving trust and votes from the electorate.co m) CES Wo rking Papers. in the minds of many nationalist parties in Europe. IV. etc. and that their national identities should be protected.and a strong opponent of the immigration.” In central Europe.co m According to a STRATFOR * (2011) study.. offensive or defensive nationalism are a source of tension between neighbor states. seeking to complete the Romanian territory. the ongoing economic crisis ”has corroborated much of that which they advocate: those immigration policies should be reformed. Figure 5 – Average votes for nationalist parties in the last 3 general elections Source: www. in the past 3 years. such as Hungary.
Not all these nationalist issues will withdraw in the near future. No. the European model of society can defend itself and protect the national identity. Great social and economic processes like the integration or the globalization can find a serious opponent in extreme nationalism. A. IV. restoring industrial and trade policies by making them more offensive could abolish criticisms against the economic openness of the EU. intolerance.gesis. (2004 a) Globalization: The multi-faced enemy?. C. In addition. 2012 33 . Mudde. Each of these problems finds support in the progressive nationalist speeches of the populist parties. Islam or multiculturalism for strengthening the borders that define the national identity. This is why the European democracy is often helpless in front of the simplistic populist thinking. pp. Kohn. CES Wo rking Papers. The fact that EU states shared their sovereignty is a source of ambiguity. CERC Working Paper. CONCLUSIONS Nationalism is made in Europe. and rejection of the other. Hobson.com/EBchecked/topic/405644/nationalism.uk/news/world-europe-13115454.bbc. available at http://www.J. is expressed by targeting immigration. (1). Of course. far from defining the territorial boundaries of states. H.britannica. A degeneration of the situation is a major threat for the already fragile European populations. Today’s nationalism. REFERENCES Europe: Nationalist resurgence (2011). available on BBC News Europe. involving their habits and lifestyles. Europe encountered the resurgence of nationalism. Economic and cultural international relations will always be affected by the differences between people. in times of massive immigration and crisis.3. the historical experience of all European nations tells us that its story will never end. (n. Only by assuming and highly asserting its own values.against Muslim Turkish and Roma minorities. Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences.org/.d) Nationalism .co. New York: Cosimo Inc. providing tensions. as well. (2005) Imperialism: A Study. Once again.4-27. acessed on February 2012 at: http://zacat. the acceptance of immigration may be assured by a more active integration policy. accessed on February 2012 at: http:/www. paradox and nationalist extremes.
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